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Combat Dizzy Spells During Pregnancy

by Alison Wood | May 20, 2013 12:00 AM1 Comments

Feeling a little dizzy and faint lately? This unexpected effect of pregnancy is experienced by a number of pregnant women. It is typically more common during the first trimester, but some women struggle with dizziness their entire pregnancy. There are several things that could be triggering your dizzy spells.

Low blood pressure. During pregnancy your blood pressure may do some funny things. Some women have never had any issues with low or high blood pressure until they conceive. These very same women may experience low as well as high blood pressure during pregnancy. Low blood pressure can cause weakness, fainting, dizziness and blackouts.

Anemia. If you are experiencing anemia, your blood does not contain enough healthy red cells to carry oxygen to your tissues. Your body is naturally producing more blood in order to sustain the pregnancy. If you're not getting enough iron or certain other nutrients, your body might not be able to produce the amount of red blood cells it needs to make this additional blood.

Over-heated. Staying in an under-ventilated area that is hot or humid can lead to dizziness.

Dehydration. Dehydration in pregnancy can become serious fast. The first symptoms are a dry mouth and thirst. If dehydration continues, dizziness, headaches and weakness are more warning signs from your body that you need some fluids.

Low blood sugar. Loads of changes are happening right now in your body. Sometimes it is hard for all the systems to keep up! Low blood sugar is common when pregnant women go longer than 3-4 hours without eating anything. Low blood sugar can cause dizziness, weakness, shakiness, headaches, rapid heartbeats and more. It is not something that you want to experience!

Hormones. The increased amount of hormones in your pregnant body can cause blood vessels to relax and widen. While this is a plus for increased blood flow to your bambino, it also affects the speed of the blood returning to your veins. In fact, it slows down and thus affects your blood pressure causing temporary dizziness.

Added Pressure. In your second and third trimester dizziness could be a result of added pressure on your uterus, and thus added pressures on your blood vessels.

Lying on your back. Lying on your back during the third trimester allows the weight of the baby to press on the large vein that carries blood from your lower body to your heart. It can also restrict blood flow to your little bundle.

How can I combat dizzy spells during pregnancy?

Change positions frequently.
Never sit or stand in one place for an extended period of time. Keep moving to improve circulation throughout your body. If you are traveling for a summer vacation or the holidays, make sure you stop every two hours to walk around. If you notice tingling and swelling in your feet sooner than that, stop at shorter intervals and get out and walk. If you are flying for several hours, walk the aisles of the plane.

Snack often.
Keep a stash of nuts, raisins or crackers in your purse to fight against low blood sugar. Consuming healthy snacks every 2-3 hours will help keep your blood sugar stable throughout pregnancy.

Stay cool.
Avoid laying out in the sun, saunas, hot baths and hot showers. Anytime things heat up, you are at risk for some extra dizzy spells.

Sleep in a safe position.
Once you have entered your second or third trimester, avoid sleeping on your back. Lay on your side and use pillows to cushion you until your body becomes more accustomed to this sleeping and resting position

Get up slowly.
If you have been sitting or lying down for a long period of time, slowly move to a standing position. Never change positions fast.

Consume an iron-rich diet.
Ask your doctor for a list of iron-rich foods to incorporate into your diet plan. Many iron-fortified foods are available to make the plans easier. Your doctor may also prescribe some iron supplements to fight against anemia during your nine months of baby forming.

Thought dizziness is quite common in pregnancy and can be controlled; there are times when dizziness is one of several symptoms that warn of a more serious problem. If you experience any of the following symptoms, contact your physician immediately.

  • Dizziness with vaginal bleeding or pain in your abdomen.
  • Ongoing dizziness that is accompanies by headaches, blurred vision and palpitations.

Source: WebMD

Alison Wood is a stay-at-home mom of six and freelance writer and blogger. She enjoys raising her six children and desires to share her experiences to help other mothers.

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jackieinman Aug 9, 2013 02:40:06 PM ET

I have been taking my iron pills and prenatal pills but still feel very dizzy and faint. i eat breakfast and try to stay hydrated. i am 31 weeks and feel like he is coming soon.

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